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Spidey Knocks Out Harry Potter at Box Office 403

RasputinAXP writes "According to this Yahoo article, Spider-Man picked up an Amazing $114 million dollars at the box office, squishing Harry Potter's $90.3 million like a bug. More coverage is available at Box Office Prophets' new Weekend Wrapup, including analysis."
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Spidey Knocks Out Harry Potter at Box Office

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  • Not surprising.... (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    You hype a movie like this enough and you're bound to make astonishing results, money-wise. Most people that went and saw the movie weren't even interested in it as Spider-man fans, they mainly went because their friends declared it was "ohhh sooo coool!".

    I'm sure no one saw these figures coming from a mile away...
    • by Com2Kid ( 142006 ) <> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @04:58PM (#3466826) Homepage Journal
      Am I like the ONLY person in the world who has not seen ANY hype at all for this movie? I have seen like ONE preview before a movie (I forget which movie it was in fact) and I have seen no ads on TV, no billboards, nothing.

      What hype? Hell I thought that only Geeks and Nerds would even be INTERESTED in the movie, or even know it existed for that matter.
      • by r00tarded ( 553054 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @05:53PM (#3467031)
        actually most of the marketing i saw was in the 80's when i was about six and addicted to the cartoon. those tricky bastards.
      • No, you're not.

        I had never even heard of the film.

    • You hype a movie like this enough and you're bound to make astonishing results, money-wise.
      Yep. This movie was hyped up almost as much as "Howard the Duck" was.

      Most people that went and saw the movie weren't even interested in it as Spider-man fans, they mainly went because their friends declared it was "ohhh sooo coool!".
      I guess this begs the question, why did their friends think it was "ohhh sooo cooool" in the first place? Face it, something doesn't get hyped unless the studios think they'll get a big fan base. Do you really think a giant marketing campaign would help "Iris," or "In the Bedroom", or "My Dinner with Andre?" They're all good movies, but not blockbuster material, no matter how much ad space they get.
  • Excellent (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Cow4263 ( 312716 ) <mike&box1,org> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @04:40PM (#3466740)
    This is fabulous. This will prove Sam Rami as a real director capable of handling the big flicks and making them profitable. Maybe now someone will fund Evil Dead 4... maybe...
    • I think there are these factors that made the movie really good:

      1. Director Sam Raimi is a diehard Spider-Man comics fanatic and you can tell from the movie he loved the subject matter.

      2. Because people knew Raimi was a Spider-Man fan, Raimi had to do a movie that lived up to the expectations of the millions of Spider-Man comics readers over the years.

      And it appears he has succeeded beyond even Sony Pictures' wildest dreams.
      • Well...not all the Spiderman fans are perfectly happy.
        Saying, "I wrote a paper in Nano-technology" does not really do much to show Parker to be a technological genius, not nearly as much as inventing web shooters (they were organic in the movie as we all know), and Pete didn't love MJ since they where little...she wasn't even his first girlfriend.

        Still, JJJ was perfect, and there were some great scenes and quotes in there like "your friendly neighborhood spiderman" and "with great power comes great responsibility," and there was some real attention to detail to make some of the shots reminescent of the comics, such as when Spidey hung upside down, and where he would go to think (on top of a gargoyle on a particular building).

        Its better than anything else like it, but not at all the same spirit. In the movie (and trailer) aunt May said, "You do too much. You're not Superman, you know." If all he's got going for him is his super powers, then isn't that exactly what he is, just another superman?
        • by Golias ( 176380 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @11:45PM (#3467977)
          Oh, gawd... LET IT GO ALREADY!!!

          The web shooters were always the one weak element of Spider-Man lore. The very idea that a tube of fluid small enough to not be seen under skin-tight spandex sleves could possibly produced even a single ten-story strand of webbing strong enough to hold a person's weight is preposterous. And Paker was shown as a science genious, in that he pretty much had his choice of colleges, his friend implies that he consistantly dominated the science fair circuit while growing up, got into a leading technology company right out of high school (remember him talking about getting fired for his chronic truancy?), and yes, writing papers about Osborn's work does establish him as a genius, because Osborn himself is stunned to learn that a HS student has even managed to read his stuff.

          John Romita Sr. (pehaps the writer most involved in creating Spider-Man lore, after Stan Lee himself), personally came around to admiring the organic webbing as "clever", and didn't consider the change that big of a deal upon reflection.

          MJ has been the main love interest of Spidey in the comics for over a quarter of a century. Did you really expect the first film to trot out the Gwen Stacey story, when she has not been a living character in the comics since 1973?

          If all he's got going for him is his super powers, then isn't that exactly what he is, just another superman?


          What defines Parker is not that he is Nobel-prise-worthy smart (which he would have to have been to invent that webbing), but his social alienation as a brainy geek. The film captured that perfectly.

    • What, he didn't prove that he was a serious director with A Simple Plan? It was a critically acclaimed, gripping drama about the banality of evil, the polar opposite of Army of Darkness, yet just as high-quality.

      And now he's showing that his range extends even further. Ah, our man Sam---is there anything he can't do?

      --grendel drago
      • Veering OT here, but has anyone seen For the Love of the Game? I've been wanting to rent that because it's Raimi (and based on a book by Michael Shaara--or is it Jeff?), but the fact that it's a Kevin Costner baseball movie's turned me off so far. Anyone know what it's like?
        • I stayed away from "For the Love of the Game" for the same reason... I was tired of Costner playing the aging jock, especially when I had recently been forced by friends to sit through him doing just that it in "Tin Cup."

          But one day some friends of mine rented it, and I watched it along with them. It was a damn good movie. The stories of his relationsip with his wife, his driven nature, his friendship with his catcher, and the coach that he had for his whole career, was all done well.

          It was also cool that the game was a meaningless contest by a team that was wrapping up a losing season.

          It was also, in my opinion, and in the opinion of many film critics and base-ball fans, some of the best-filmes baseball action sequences ever. It really brings home the elements of baseball as "a game of yards and inches".

          See it when you get the chance.

  • Not suprised (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Dalaram ( 447015 ) <> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @04:42PM (#3466746) Homepage
    Im not particularly suprised, altho the parallel definitely exists. While Harry potter was catering to a much more central audience (I.E the people who read the books), Spiderman is something that everyone can identify with. Im pretty sure we've all seen the comics, the cartoons, the video games. There is just a lot more Spidey propaganda. Now, what I want to see is in 2 weeks, how much Episode 2 crushes the market...
    • Or more specifically how well ATOC does during its opening compared to TPM did.

      Prior to TPM, the hype machine was in full swing and everyone, even the non-geek-fanatics, was interested in not only seeing it, but on opening night.

      But I just get the feeling that's no longer true for ATOC, thanks to the letdown that TPM was for the hardened fans, and in many ways, it was the contagious enthusiasm of the fanatics that carried over to the general populace.

      Personally, I'll go see AOTC, but I certainly won't wait in a long line for it, and absolutely seeing it openning night isn't the priority that it once was. I don't doubt that ATOC will do well, but it's performance will be rather level over its run, not quite explosive during that opening weekend that the other Star Wars films will be.

      And while there are still hardcore fans, their numbers will most likely have been reduced, at least in part.

      Just for some numbers, a quick look at Box Office Mojo [] shows that The Phantom Menace did $64,820,970 in its opening weekend, compared to Spider-Man's $114 million. As it stands, Spidey is already at 1/4 of TPMs $431,088,297 gross to date number.
  • by Pave Low ( 566880 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @04:45PM (#3466764) Journal
    this movie would have been perfect for Katz to pontificate about the ramifcations from 9/11 on the setting of the movie to how Peter Parker was really just like a Columbine geek, but with superpowers.
    • Interestingly enough, one of the early Spider-Man trailers online had some bank robbers escaping on a helicopter only to be strung up on a web between the World Trade Center towers by Spider-Man. After the 9/11 incident, they quickly pulled that one and replaced with other one.
      • Uh huh. That entire sequence was shot specifically and only for that trailer. It was never meant to be in the movie. The trailer was so successful that the sequence was going to be incorporated into the movie but after 9/11 it was pulled entirely.

  • Better link (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Riskable ( 19437 ) <> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @04:45PM (#3466765) Homepage Journal
    There's a better link with all sorts of box-office statistics here []

    I can't believe TItanic made that much!
    • by Macrobat ( 318224 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @05:24PM (#3466936)
      I'm always skeptical about numbers like that. Do they adjust for inflation? The fact that a movie makes, say $80 million with an average ticket price of eight dollars means that exactly the same number of people saw something that made $50 million back in the days of $5 tickets. But I've never seen the numbers adjusted to account for that.

      For that matter, I've never seen them adjusted for population growth or the general economic climate. Star Wars came out when there were 200 million people in the U.S.; now there's something like 270 million plus. That's gotta make a difference, as does a movie's showing during boom times versus a recession.

      • by xcomputer_man ( 513295 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @06:28PM (#3467170) Homepage
        They did think of that, there is a page on the site that contains an inflation-adjusted list of All Time Domestic grosses. Not surprisingly, Gone With The Wind tops the list with $1.1 billion dollars, followed closely by the 1977 release of Star Wars.

        The full list is here [].

        Very, very interesting site.
      • I agree it would be nice to have them factor in those variables, but there is so much to consider that a complex formula would be required.

        I think there should be at least three measures that show a movie's performance. 1) Percentage profit a movie makes 2) Tickets sold compared to population given as a percentage 3) Average percentage of seats filled at theaters.

        Measure 1 would show how profitable a movie is. An indication as to its success relative to the financers.

        Measure 2 would not represent really how many people actually saw it (some see it multiple times) but it would give at least a quasi-accurate indication over time of how one movie compares to another.

        Measure 3 would potentially measure a movie's ability to draw the crowds.

        There are ways these could be manipulated to give even more accurate indications. I do agree that raw sales figures are flawed.
  • Pretty large bug.. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gweihir ( 88907 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @04:45PM (#3466766)
    I would say that 114 is only 26% more than 90.
    Calling that "squash like a bug" is not only bad journalism, it also shows that the person writing this has no feel for numbers.

    If this was processor speeds we are talking about, the difference would be barely perceptable....
    • Journawhatilism? This is Slashdot. They don't even care about spelling. It's entertainment. Laugh a little :)
    • by thelexx ( 237096 )
      We'll be sure to consult with you on the exact meaning of colloquial expressions in the future. And speaking as the most powerful bug in the two universes, I'd like to see this Spider-whoever try it with me!


      BTW - It was a bit of irony that the expression 'squash like a bug' was used to describe how a movie _about_ a bug (sorta) performed at the box office. Try using your feel for humor before pounding your chest next time.
    • "No feel for numbers" is relative to the problem domain: If these were marathon times we were talking about, someone slicing 26% off the current record would be unthinkable. Beating a box office record by 26% isn't that insane, but it is pretty good.
    • I disagree. 26% is a big difference. Consider the difference between 1st and also ran in the gold medal heat of the Olympics' 100 meters is usually something less than 15% faster than last place (unless the poor sap falls and doesn't finish). 26% is a pretty big margin. Also consider the sheer volume. 26% of 90 million dollars is indeed a lot of happy meals. It is also a lot of Hummers, Ferraris, or (insert favorite sports car). Also consider that the afore mentioned 90 million was the record, and nearly defeated in 67% of the time. Also consider that the 90 million was done on something like 8% more screens. Add it all together and that 26% is being very kind to the other four-eyed geek.
  • by DAldredge ( 2353 )
    Please explain how the results for this weekend have been computed. It is still in the afternoon on Sunday when I write this.
  • by DarkHelmet ( 120004 ) <`ten.elcychtneves' `ta' `kram'> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @04:47PM (#3466774) Homepage
    Spider sense... tingling.
    Harry Potter... bitchslapped.
    • by SuiteSisterMary ( 123932 ) <slebrun AT gmail DOT com> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @05:28PM (#3466948) Journal
      Spider-man! Spider-man! Makes more money than Rowling can. Gets to lay Kirsten Dunst! Sequel assured, in a few months. Watch out! Here comes the Spider-man! In Summer, 2002, movies were showing.
      George Lucas: What happen??
      Rick McCallum: Somebody set up us the blockbuster.
      Rick McCallum: We get phone call.
      George Lucas: What?
      Rick McCallum: Main screen turn on.
      George Lucas: It's you!!
      Sam Raimi: How are you gentlemen??
      Sam Raimi: All your demographic are belong to us!
      George Lucas: What you say??
      Sam Raimi: You are on the way to bankruptcy.
      Sam Raimi: You have no chance to make up for Phantom Menace, make your sequel!
      Sam Raimi: Ha ha ha!
      George Lucas: Take off every merchandise.
      Rick McCallum: You know what you doing??
      George Lucas: For great profit
      Geroge Lucas: move merchandise.
  • by fahrvergnugen ( 228539 ) <> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @04:54PM (#3466809) Homepage
    Saying that film A made more money than film B is in the end a meaningless metric for determining how much overall success a film has enjoyed. The reason I say this is that ticket prices increase over time. This means that Titanic's $601 million, while impressive, is in the end less impressive than E.T.'s $435 million.

    Tickets cost roughly $5, if not less, in 1982.
    This means that roughly 87 million tickets were sold to E.T.

    Tickets cost roughly $8, if not more, in 1997. This means that Titanic sold only approximately 78 million tickets, 9 million less than E.T. did fifteen years prior.

    (obviously these are very rough numbers, and don't take into account many other factors such as matinee prices, 2nd run theaters, etc. but they give you the idea)

    Following a gross, without accounting for inflation in ticket prices, is ultimately meaningless. It would be much more meaningful to pay attention to how many actual tickets were sold, but 87 million is a much less impressive number than 601 million, so it'll never happen.

    I can dream, though.
    • Meaningless if this story were comparing Spiderman to E.T., but not meaningless when comparing it to a movie that was released only a few months ago. Ticket prices haven't risen significantly (or at all, probably) since Harry Potter is a very recent movie.

      So I agree that money made is a useless figure for comparing movies with a big gap between release times (10-15 years or more), but when comparing recent movies it serves its purposes well enough. I suppose it's most useful to suits, though...

      "I know we're making a movie like spider-man, and maybe spider-man sold 87 million tickets.. but how much MONEY did it make?"

      Still, it works for this comparison.
      • It would be much more meaningful to pay attention to how many actual tickets were sold

      Very insightful. Another thing that is no doubt screwing the figures is the curse that is season tickets. I simply will not go to a theatre that has any kind of weekly/monthly/annual ticket option any more. It's bad enough trying to pick the slot with the fewest mall rats without having to worry about people who haven't even paid to see the film, have absolutely no interest in actually watching it, and who are treating the theatre as a convenient spot to gather, chat and (god help us) breed. Grrr.

      Incidentally, the CGI in the trailers for both this film and AOTC really sucks. I mean, there were better looking FX in Ghostbusters. Maybe we could do with a little less of pushing the animators' limits, and start doing less, but really well. I like animation and all, but I like it as animation, not as shoddy ersatz psuedo-reality.

      • ...people who haven't even paid to see the film, have absolutely no interest in actually watching it, and who are treating the theatre as a convenient spot to gather, chat and (god help us) breed.

        These people are breeding in the theatre?

        Ok, so I haven't been to a movie theatre in a while, but still... I can't believe it has really gotten *that* bad.
    • Check out the Frontline episode, the monster that ate hollywood. []

      It *is* all about the opening weekend gross these days, according to this story.

      Have risk-averse MBAs killed Hollywood's magic? Studio executives, producers, filmmakers, and critics talk about how the movie business, and movies themselves, have changed.
      John Pierson, the man behind many an indie, takes stock of what's "independent" today. Plus, interviews with Elvis Mitchell, Allison Anders, Kevin Smith, and Michael Douglas.
      The Atlantic Monthly's Charles C. Mann on what Hollywood has learned from Napster. Plus, industry insiders discuss how digital technology and the Internet may transform filmmaking.
      A closer look at the business of movies, including the story of how Steven Spielberg's "Jaws" gave birth to the summer blockbuster and changed Hollywood forever.

      The premise is that all the studios and distributors are now controlled by a handful of mega corps who make and market movies based on a formula of risk management. They closely estimate and monitor the opening weekend gross, which is indeed used as the yardstick to extrapolate the total return on the movie including first-run, overseas dist, video sales, merchandise, tv and cable runs, etc.

      Comparing to movies 5-10 years ago _is_ meaningless. Comparing to Harry Potter is very relevant.
    • by mooneyd ( 233024 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @06:24PM (#3467154) Homepage
      Here you go []

      1 Gone With the Wind: $1,146,081,811

      2 Star Wars: $1,025,027,477

      3 The Sound of Music: $850,020,681

      4 E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial: $823,800,033

      5 The Ten Commandments: $760,123,752

      6 Jaws: $743,173,676

      7 Titanic: $725,045,021

    • If you compare the population of the USA at the two different times, you get an even more impressive result for E.T. as well.
    • If you read the articles, they talked about ticket sales as well. It also compared to older films on adjusted grosses.
  • w00t! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by tempest303 ( 259600 ) <jensknutson AT yahoo DOT com> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @04:58PM (#3466828) Homepage
    Perhaps after Spidey, Harry Potter, and LotR, Hollywood will finally get a fscking clue that a big budget requires a good PLOT and good ACTING to back it up, but that when you can manage all of those, everyone wins...

    That, and it sure can't hurt the odds of better comic book based movies being made in the future. :)
    • Perhaps after Spidey, Harry Potter, and LotR, Hollywood will finally get a fscking clue that a big budget requires a good PLOT and good ACTING to back it up, but that when you can manage all of those, everyone wins...

      Why? All these movie are also effects-laiden. What makes you think they won't just say, "See, we TOLD YOU the people just want to see effects films!"

  • Newsflash (Score:2, Insightful)

    by OpCode42 ( 253084 )
    Newly released movie knocks months old movie off top spot!

    Ever seem me surprized?

    Take a good look.

    This is it.
    • They're not comparing it to how well Potter's doing now. They're comparing it to how well it did when it came out. Reading Is Fundamental.
  • Inflation (Score:2, Redundant)

    The reason these records keep being broken is because of inflation. Every year we should expect the previous year's record to broken by about 3%.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 05, 2002 @05:13PM (#3466891)
    I enjoyed the movie, except for the obvious post-9/11 edits. I'm sure they seemed appropriate when they were added just days after the attacks (the New Yorkers' "you mess with one of us, you mess with all of us" line, the badly digitally inserted U.S. flag in the final scene), but they stick out like a sore thumb almost a year later.

    Who can forget the multi-millionaire Hollywood stars begging for attention just days after the terrorist attacks, all too eager to remind the rest of the world that they're better and more important than the lowly common folk and the situation at hand.

    Or how every movie in production at the time was trying to figure out "how to best address the attacks" (Translation: how to best market it to the public).

    You had the P.C. goons at the studios rushing to erase the Trade Center from their movies, past and present. ("Oh no! The sight of the buildings actually standing might offend or upset someone!")

    You also had script monkeys trying to shoehorn patriotism into situations where it was not necessarily appropriate. ("Hey, I know! Let's put a bigass flag behind him!")

    What's the message they're trying to get across? Spiderman standing next to the U.S. flag? Do they mean to say that we as Americans should applaud our fake heroes as "Real American Heroes" instead of our real ones?

    Hollywood is trying to show that it's still important in this day and age. It clearly is not. Let fantasy be fantasy, and reality be reality. For God's sake, life is short. Let's get on with it.

    Thank you.

    • I think you must have forgotten to log in or something, because that was a pretty damn insightful AC post...


    • by bc90021 ( 43730 ) <bc90021&bc90021,net> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @05:47PM (#3467016) Homepage
      And I thought *I* was cycnical...

      First, are you a New Yorker? If you're not, you don't quite know just what it was like to be on the island that day. If you do, I am surprised at how bitter you are.

      Second, if you have a problem with the "post 9/11 edits", you're missing a big point. In order to accurately portray NYC now, you can't have the buildings there. It is quite unfortunate (I lost two friends, I know), but it is still true. Besides, the world got enough coverage of the gruesome happening on the news - we can cherish the memories of friends and loved ones we lost, but we don't need to be reminded every five seconds like we were on the news for two months.

      Third, while you seem to have this negative image of all "Hollywood" people, I stood on line to give blood that day behind some of New York's finest actors and actresses, standing in line to help just like every one else. They weren't asking for attention, just to help.

      Fourth, what is wrong with patriotism? You have a problem with it because people have re-realised what it means to be patriotic? Where were you two years ago crying about a lack of patriotism in this country?

      Fifth, no one is suggesting that we applaud fake heroes. In case you missed it, there were plenty of New York's Finest, and New York's Bravest, in the movie. And that 'you mess with one of us, you mess with all of us' was always true; the rest of the country didn't know it as well as we NYers, but hey, behind that gruff exterior lies a heart of generosity. It always has.
      • First, are you a New Yorker? If you're not, you don't quite know just what it was like to be on the island that day.

        Just because the same accident of proximity did not befall the other guy, does not mean his opinion about what happened there and elsewhere in that day is "less worthy" than yours. "Being there" didn't give you a trump card. But this is hardly surprising, since New Yorkers had the same attitude about "being in New York" before 9/11. I think there's enough distance now to stop overlooking that little conceit, and call them on it just like we always have.

        And I thought *I* was cycnical...

        You ain't seen nothin' yet.

    • The people on the Queensborough Bridge and throwing stuff at the Gobiln really did embody the spirit of this city, as demonstrated not only on and after 9/11 but every day. If you don't live here, then you may believe the stereotypes of New Yorkers as pushy and rude. The fact is, there is a hell of a lot of solidarity, compassion and pride in this city, and I appreciated Raimi's and Koepp's homage to us.

      I also saw nothing wrong with Spidey's leap past an American flag at the end. It was not lingered on, and in fact many tall buildings in NYC do have flags on top of them, so it was not implausible. I am one of many who feel that the symbols of this country, like the flag, represent not so much its government as its people. Spider-Man and Peter Parker are fictional, but the values they represent ("with great power comes great responsibility") are important to many Americans. I didn't mind the flag at all, and I bet most viewers would agree.

      </my $0.02>
    • ("Oh no! The sight of the buildings actually standing might offend or upset someone!")

      Negative association. During a scene featuring the WT towers, instead of people thinking about the story or cool effects/CGI people might have flashbacks of 9/11. IANAHP (Hollywood producer) but I wouldn't want people thinking those things during my movies unless the movie was about 9/11. This issue will probably change with more time.

    • Hmm. I think you are reading way too much into the movie than was intended. From the tone of your post, I'd have to say Hollywood was right... there are some people hyper-sensitive to 9/11.

      The discussion of New York, patriotism, whatever... was far more subtle than in other past comic superhero movies.(i.e. think Superman) Raimi did a nice balance and I saw nothing in there which shouted post 9/11.
  • Isnt it funny (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Edmund Blackadder ( 559735 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @05:20PM (#3466921)
    How western culture has made people proud of giving their money.

    I mean you can like a movie and pay for it, and there is nothing wrong with that, but to say this movie rules because we payed so many millions of dollars into it is just sad.

    And then of course you have to race so many people will try very hard to make attack of the clones gross higher than spiderman and lor.

    If the studios brainwashed the american public they couldnt have done a better job.

  • Two decades of Hollywood horseshit is being buried under righteous indignation.

    Go Stan.

    "'Nuff sed."
  • Everybody has been waiting twenty years for this movie. And when word got out that the filmmakers got it right, everybody had to see it.
  • In case its not totally obvious, those numbers are estimates... The actual numbers won't come until Monday at the earliest.
  • Let's see... $114 million...

    Cost to see it on opening day: $7.50.
    Cost to see it the next day at a matinee: $5.00.
    Cost to see it today at a matinee: $5.00.
    Cost to see it tomorrow at a matinee: $5.00.
    Cost to see it again tomorrow evening with my girlfriend: $7.50.

    Seeing kick-ass Spider-Man movie five times in four days: PRICELESS. :)
    • Saw it near Washington DC at an AMC Theatres matinee (while fighting's hell to get a refund after you order from so I decided to risk getting sick) at 1 pm for $5.

      And yes, I managed to last the entire film without getting sick :).

  • Looking over the statistics at [], i've made an interesting observation.

    To begin, the unadjusted statistics are meaningless. It's like looking at the price of a 1910 hotdog and concluding that the cost of lips and a$$holes has increased.

    Looking over the adjusted all-time records [], things look a bit more sensible. I have no doubt that these movies represent the most popular movies of all time (about half are even on the AFI top-100).

    However, if we compare this to the adjusted all-time opening weekened statistics [] , we see that Not One of the top 100 was more recent then 1989.

    What this indicates to me, is that over the course of the last two decades, hollywood has shifted it's advertising dollar from a constant support of a released movie, to an all-out blitz opening weekends. Why?

    The VCR perhaps?


    • has shifted it's advertising dollar from a constant support of a released movie, to an all-out blitz opening weekends. Why?
      Over saturation of the market. Wasn't that long ago that you looked forward to THE 'summer blockbuster.' Nowadays there's one coming out every two weeks. Therefore, you grabs what you can in the first two weeks, and rely on merchandise and what not to actually pay for the movie, generally.
  • by Sarcasmooo! ( 267601 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @06:28PM (#3467174)
    Wah! Waaaah! WAAAAHHH!
  • Is it just me... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Rogerborg ( 306625 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @06:46PM (#3467234) Homepage

    ... or did the visual FX in this movie suck donkey dong? And the trailers for AOTC look really ropey as well.

    This isn't uninformed griping, I used to work with CGI artists in a games company. A typical conversation with a client would go something like this:

    • Client: Can you...
    • Artists: Sure, we just need to double the size of the render farm. You can afford that, right?
    • Client: Uh, I haven't told you what I need yet.
    • Artists: Bah, we can do anything you want, exactly as you want it, and as realistic as you want it. All we need to do is throw enough hardware at it, and buy enough third party lightwave plugins.
    • Client: Uh, OK. Here's a bushel of money.
    • ... time passes ...
    • Client: Deadline time, hand it over.
    • Artists: Uh, the thing is, we were planning on just buying all the models, but they all sucked, so we had to do our own. And then we had some trouble with the animation paths. And there was a bit of an overcommitment on the render farm, so we had to prune a few million poly's on some of the scenes, but if you just give us another two weeks, we can buy more hardware and re-render...
    • Client: The fuck? We go gold tomorrow! What part of "deadline" didn't you understand? Aaargh! You know what this'll cost us in reviewer kickbacks?

    OK, I'm over generalising. They sometimes got it just right, but a lot of the time they vastly over commited themselves and ended up with a final product that nobody really liked, least of all themselves.

    The problem as I see it is that the answer is always "yes". Models and stop motion put a well understood limit on what was achievable, and scenes were set and shot around those limits. Even when pushing the envelope like in SW:ANH, they didn't over stretch themselves or try anything that they knew they couldn't achieve.

    Contrast with SW:TPW, SW:AOTC and Spider-Man. The answer was always "yes". Go ahead, give us anything to do, and we'll do it. Let your imagination go wild.

    And what did we get? Ropey looking integration of CGI into live action scenes, ropey looking integration of live action into CGI scenes, 100% CGI scenes that jar badly with the live action.

    You can counter with Ray Harryhausen, but then I'll just have to roll out Alien, Aliens and Blade Runner. Do less, but do it well. Learn to say "no", guys.

  • by ziegast ( 168305 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @06:48PM (#3467244) Homepage
    There's no doubt that the movie is having a successful weekend, but how successful was it?

    Is the John Harman a prophet? or is he just a part of the hype machine for Sony? He already seems to have wrapped up the weekend in past tense before it's even over.

    Spider-Man opened to $114 million on 3,615 screens

    At least the Yahoo article quoted sources:

    ... according to studio estimates issued on Sunday.

    Let's take it for what it's worth - propaganda. The goal is to get the people out there thinking, "Gosh, this movie is so popular. Maybe I should go out tonight and see it."

    The weekend is not over. Sony could hypothetically be ready to announce next weekend's box office results on Thursday this week. We'll all forget about Spider Man the following weekend when it's 15 minutes of hype^H^H^H^H fame are over when next Star Wars prequel is released.

    What movie company was beind movies like "The Animal" that garnered rave reviews from fictional critics?
  • Seriously. Should we care, other than the fact that it gives the MPAA that much more money in their warchest to buy away our rights?
  • No-one else has said it yet.. but.. whoa, Kirsten Dunst.. ain't she looking FINE? Great tits.

    Come on, you know that's what you're all thinking. Her tits and motherly looks could sell a film any day.
  • I've heard of Marvel vs. Capcom, but Marvel vs. Hogwartz? Now that's something I'd pay to see!
  • I saw the movie saturday and was happily surprised and entertained. Given most movies by-pass character development for T&A or something equivalent, it is nice the movie spent time on developing the main characters.

    Don't get me wrong, there were flaws, but overall it was a good movie and really entertaining. For me, it is better than X-men and the first Batman. I like character development, so having peter parker go through the awkward phase of learning how to use his powers was great fun. Plus having him wrestle was just too funny.

  • by harlows_monkeys ( 106428 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @10:26PM (#3467773) Homepage
    Interesting story on CNN yesterday about this and other Marvel movies. Marvel sold the movie rights for X-Men for a fixed fee of $350,000. They got no royalties at all. X-Men was a big hit in theaters, and on DVD, and none of that went to Marvel.

    The deal for Spiderman, and for Daredevil and Hulk in the next year or so, is more normal, and they will get royalties.

  • by wedg ( 145806 ) on Monday May 06, 2002 @12:01AM (#3468021) Homepage Journal
    ...but did anyone else notice how everyone seemed so eager to erase the Twin Towers from every bit of media we ever had? I half expected people to go after old magazines and newspaper with white out.

    For what? So we can say, "Hey look everyone, they were never really there!" So strange.

Q: How many IBM CPU's does it take to execute a job? A: Four; three to hold it down, and one to rip its head off.